Fortune favours the brave and it shone on Spidertech's Francois Parisien today as he took the hard road to Xalapa, attacking with a group of four some 50km from the stage finish to win ahead of overall favourite Francisco Mancebo (Rock Racing) and Edwin Parra (Boyaca Orgullo de America).
The Canadian now sits in third overall, behind the men he beat in the finale of the 108km journey from Veracruz, which was run under clear Mexican skies. With approximately 50km remaining in the stage he attacked with Mancebo, Parra and Valeriy Kobzarenko (Team Type I), who was dropped and finished four seconds down on the remaining trio.
"I attacked 50 kilometers to go, my team supported me and worked hard for that," said Parisien, who made the switch to the Canadian Continental squad last year, having previously ridden for ProTour outfit Garmin-Slipstream.
"The stage was tough especially in the mountain area, but after I rode a hard sprint at the end of the stage I could relax at the front - I could turn back and saw that no one was coming behind me," he added.
Mancebo conceded that Parisien "easily won the sprint; I attacked too early and then when I saw the strength of his sprint and didn't know who would follow [to challenge] for the win."
There's bigger fish to fry for Mancebo however, who has his eye on another Vuelta México Telmex title. "We have riders like Oscar Sevilla, Ignacio Sarabia, Juan Pablo Magallanes and myself that we can win, we come prepared for that," he explained.
"Today was a difficult race because of the heat at the start of the stage," said Edwin Parra, who now sits in second overall. "We put ourselves in a good place but later in the mountain stages we hope to put up some competition."
"[We will] look for the mountain stages like we did to take the Tour of Colombia," parra added. "I think we do have chances of winning the overall and team [classification]."